Many associations and companies know that politicians, worldwide, need more knowledge and better understanding of the benefits that meetings and events can add to the development of, for example, universities, and destinations, regions and countries.

No one knows how many associations there are in the world. But we know, for example, that there are medical associations in every country, and often for almost every discipline in medicine. Even certain diseases have their own dedicated associations, technical areas and different kinds of engineers, technicians, economists, etcetera. In fact, almost all professions have their own associations, trade unions and political organisations. And these all tend to have congresses nationally, continentally and globally.

Universities and colleges all around the world send people to congresses and conferences, seminars, events, symposia, colloquia and trade fairs to acquire new knowledge and build their networks. This is why every university city should have a congress facility that can host international congresses and conferences. So why doesn’t this happen? Why do so many politicians postpone their decision to build a convention facility even though the university in the same city sends hundreds of employees elsewhere to develop their research and knowledge and to establish the university? For politicians to not acknowledge that fact is simply a form of hypocrisy.

Two synonyms for ‘hypocrisy’ are ‘double standards’ and ‘lying’. When examining the situation, it is evident that way too many politicians are just pretending not to understand, while they really must be aware of the importance of people attending congresses or inviting congresses to their city. It is simply elementary. Knowledge thrives at congresses. The exchange of knowledge helps develop individuals. The breeding ground for future Nobel Prizes is often burtured or even created in just such environments. And the benefits of attracting talent and prominent visitors to your city is self-evident.

If you are a leading politician in your city, you really must be able to understand the connection between the exchange of knowledge and future breakthroughs and awards, and their ensuing ripple effects. Because if you aren’t, you are simply out of your depth and unqualified to be a politician responsible for your destination’s development. You need to support your city’s universities and colleges to help both your current citizens and future generations.

It is pretentious, if not outright deceitful, to merely create pilot studies and architectural competitions for conference facilities that are never allowed to actually come to fruition just because some naysayers object that the proposed facility is an ugly building, in the wrong place, and will cost too much.

The list of objections may of course go on, but all too many yielding politicians and civil servants must really be aware of why a convention facility isn’t just nice, or even important, but actually necessary. It is simply required in order to develop universities, the city itself, and its residents. And we can’t allow ignorant voices veto power over our cities’ development.

We can’t afford to let hypocrisy rule. We can’t afford to let people without full-picture knowledge intimidate politicians into not daring to make decisive and essential decisions about the necessary development of our cities. All politicians need to understand the connection between congresses and future breakthroughs or even Nobel Prizes, and the obvious benefits of amassing a wealth of knowledge and attracting talent. And they need to understand that unless we build for the future, there isn’t going to be much of one.